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Shannan Keenan's self-financed debut feature proves that an indie filmmaker can actually produce a coherent, structured film for under $35,000. A trooper indeed, Keenan serves up a dark comedy complete with believable, engaging (albeit dimwitted) characters. The laughs during the interrogation flashbacks coupled with the strength and delivery of this cast of unknowns, gives LOAVES its own unique flavor. A promising first feature, keeping the dream alive for no-budget filmmakers struggling to produce something other than the tiresome personal editorials dominating the festival circuit. -- Film Threat
Set in the quiet rural backwater town
of Anndale, this twisted and dark comedy tells the tale of bread deliveryman
Russell, who wants to bump off his overweight, nagging wife so he can be with
the sexy but manipulative Tammy. Enter Russell's hapless cousin Eldon Puckett,
the least competent hitman since stuttering Ken from A Fish Called Wanda, who
comically bungles numerous harebrained assassination attempts. When local icon
Ice Cream Bob is accidentally wounded by an errant arrow, it's up to overworked
Detective McCully to get to the bottom of this sordid web of sex, lies, and
Filled with zany dialogue, inventive comedy set pieces, and the nuttiest bunch of yokels since Fargo, this innovative yuck fest goes straight for the funny bone. Over-the-top performances do justice to the script in Loaves.
Boffo! This small-budget indie delivers far more laughs than a dozen studio comedies. Loaves starts with a hilarious script and then makes the best of it with inspired performances from all involved. Production values are surprisingly slick for an independent film, and solid direction and editing juice the piece for maximum comedy.
Writer/director Shannan Keenan manages to approach the level of high farce without distancing the film too much from reality, chiefly by focusing on the oddball characters rather than any contrived situation comedy, just as Joel and Ethan Coen do in Fargo. Once the dunderheaded conspirators get caught up in the web of lies, the laughs flow freely.
It's amazing that a film of the
quality can be made for less than $35,000--it will be interesting to see what
this filmmaker can do with a real budget. The flirty but clueless waitress
gets my vote for scene-stealer in this satisfying and very funny comedy.
-- Bill Spring